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Karishma Initiative, McCann’s MRM Worldwide bag Etisalat biz; ac size Rs 400 cr

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Karishma Initiative, McCann’s MRM Worldwide bag Etisalat biz; ac size Rs 400 cr

UAE-based telecom operator Etisalat Telecom (Emirates Telecommunications) has decided on its media and creative partners. Lintas Media Group’s third media service brand, Karishma Initiative, has been assigned its media duties, while MRM Worldwide, the digital arm of McCann Worldgroup, has bagged the creative mandate. The account size is estimated in the region of Rs 400 crore.

Etisalat has picked up a 45-per cent stake in Indian telecom firm Swan Telecom Pvt Ltd for $900 million in a move to enter the Indian market. It may be recalled that in September 2008, Etisalat and Swan Telecom had signed the deal. Swan Telecom, controlled by Mumbai-based real estate and hospitality business group Dynamix Balwas (DB) Group, holds universal access service (UASL) licences in 13 telecom circles across India.

Last week, exchange4media had reported on the launch of Lintas Media Group’s third media service brand Karishma Initiative (KI) and that the agency had also bagged the Rs 400-crore Etisalat business.

For its creative mandate, the telecom operator has chosen McCann Worldgroup’s digital arm, MRM Worldwide. No further details were forthcoming at the time of filing this report.

Etisalat operates in 16 countries across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, servicing over 6.4 crore customers. Etisalat is among the several global players that are poised to enter the Indian market. It will face some stiff competition from existing operators and well-entrenched players such as Bharti Airtel, Reliance Communications and Vodafone. Some of the new entrants include Sistema Shyam Teleservices (STL), Datacom (backed by Videocon), and Unitech Wireless.

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